by Jessie

in NH waiting impatiently for summer


It’s nearing the end of May and that means the ocean is calling. I spend the winter visiting the beach about twice a month, wrapped in a long down-filled coat, breathing the fresh air while looking for shells, driftwood and bits of sea glass. I tell myself it is enough to just be near the water, hearing the waves crash against the shore. I resist the urge to peel off my fleece-lined boots and dip my feet in the numbing foam by reminding myself my balance will be compromised if I lose any toes to frostbite.

But in early May, I’ve traded the coat for a light sweater and upped the frequency of my visits to once a week. I stand on the sand debating if it’s warm enough to shuck my shoes. By mid-May, unable to wait any longer, I’ve traded shoes for flip flops and have started wading down the beach with my pants rolled up.

Unfortunately, it’s a long time between wading weather and swimming weather in northern New England. The beach town I spend time in starts to come back to life at the same slow, steady pace. Shops begin sticking up help wanted signs in windows. The arcade near the pier begins opening on weekends. Each sign of summer makes me more eager for it to arrive. It’s like being a kid when Christmas decorations start appearing in stores.

It will be another month until I can swim without crying, probably two before it is actually a pleasure. So, while I’m restlessly waiting for summer to come, I’ll break out the kite I boughtIMG_0831 myself last May to make pass the time until the lifeguards return. I’ll sniff the air, hoping to catch a whiff of suntan oil. And I’ll smile at other beach-combers as we pass, feeling less restless as I realize I am not the only one waiting.

How about you? Does spring make you feel restless too?

A nearly life-long resident of the Granite State, Jessie naturally adores black flies, 98% humidity, and snow banks taller than the average grandmother. When not working on her next murderous adventure she enthusiastically designs bento lunches and throws parties. She delights in mentoring young writers at local schools. Her debut mystery, Live Free or Die, was the 2011 winner of the Daphne DuMaurier Award for Mainstream Mystery. Drizzled with Death, the first in the Sugar Grove Mystery series will release October 1, 2013. 

3 Thoughts

  1. I agree. I love summer so much – hey, I grew up in southern California! In the Northeast this spring in particular has been very chilly, so I’m restless for wearing sandals and needing that overhead fan. For eating a sun-warmed tomato right off the vine. For enjoying a gin-and-tonic u nder the umbrella on the deck with a good book. Sure, spring is gorgeous with lush greens and flowering trees. But I say, bring it on, summer!

  2. Once upon a time I was a summer girl but now I like milder seasons. And during my five years in New England I’m not sure I ever thought it was warm enough to swim in the ocean. Of course when I lived in Florida I wouldn’t get in the pool until the temperature was at least 80 degrees!

  3. I agree with Sherry. I’ve been in New England for 35+ years, but during most of that time our extended family took a week’s vacation at the Jersey shore. Give me 70+ ocean water any day, and as to the pool, 84 is perfect.

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